Six Gardening Prep Tasks You Can Do Now … Even if it’s Snowing


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Yes, there’s snow outside. Yes, Indiana is suppose to get more snow tomorrow. Depending on where you live, it could be as little as 2-4 inches or as much as 30 inches. (I heard someone say the 30 inches of snow forecast might be a hoax.) Regardless, snow is on its way.

Winter is still here, BUT … not forever! Every day we turn a new page in the calendar. Every day we are closer to spring! If you’re hearing Rocky Balboa music in your head, we’re on the same page.

Maybe we can’t sow any seeds outside, but we can still do some gardening [prep] tasks that make us feel like spring is almost here.

Here are six gardening prep tasks you can do now … even if it’s snowing.

1. Shred and Save Junk Mail.

We have lots of junk mail and old bank statements around our house, but [most of] it doesn’t end up in a landfill. Instead, it gets shredded and set aside for my red wiggler worms.

When you wet the paper the mass shrinks INCREDIBLY! If you think you have plenty of paper for your first worm bin, save about 3-4 times that much. It’s like a big fluffy dog. After it gets a bath, you realize just how much of the dog was simply fluff.

2. Save Toilet Paper Rolls.

Last fall I talked about all the ways gardeners use toilet paper rolls and various cardboard. If you’re planning on starting your seeds indoors, you’ll want to have a bag full of these. They make the perfect seed-starter pot.

3. Have Helpful Resources at-the-Ready.

Last week I shared three must-have books for any gardener. I have these three books, and I HIGHLY recommend them.

Having a powerful gardening resource at-the-ready in your garden shed or on your front porch is just like having a cookbook or recipe box in your kitchen. Every good cook has one (or many). :)


4. Save Eggshells.

Eggshells can go straight into the ground, or they can be tossed into your compost pile. (Worms will eat them, too, if finely ground.) I recommend rinsing them if you’re saving them for future outside use. I rinse mine with warm/hot water immediately after using the eggs.

Tomatoes, peppers, and other plants susceptible to blossom end rot will benefit from these food scraps.

Unless you want to eat a carton of eggs every couple days right before you need them for the garden, start setting them aside now. :)

5. Order Your Seeds.

I know it’s obvious, but how many years have thought you had plenty of time only to find yourself later scrambling to get your seed order placed? Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds Co. is a great place to get your heirloom seeds.

6. Save Used Coffee Grounds.

I forgot to include my stash of saved coffee grounds in the photo.

Coffee grounds can go in your compost pile, directly in the garden, or tossed into your worm bin.

Want to know more about compost worms? Check out my Compost Worms 101 series.

What did I miss in this list? What are YOU doing to prepare for spring gardening?

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9 comments to Six Gardening Prep Tasks You Can Do Now … Even if it’s Snowing

  • janet panecki

    I already compost shredded paper, eggshells, scraps and coffee grounds.

    I am saving pieces of yarn, natural fibers only, to tie up plants. Gallon milk jugs have been washed and let dry. When planting tomatoes, just cut bottom off with exacto and use it as a cloche. When plants get a bit bigger, I cut the top of jugs off to use as a collar.
    I also save newspaper as a weed barrier for pathways.

  • Roxie

    This year when starting seeds I tried using different vessels for my plants. I was trying to re-use items. I ended up using Mr.Noodle cups, solo cups, toilet paper rolls, and plastic water bottles. I used a fantastic organic seed starter and gave them lots of love. Every thing came up beautifully except the seeds started in the toilet paper rolls. I had made sure to use the same seeds in each different planter as a test. The seeds in the toilet paper rolls did come up but when they did they looked very yellow and unhealthy. I used egg shell and banana peel tea to keep them going. As soon as each one had a true leaf on it I transplanted them into a different container. They quickly came back to health. They are easily the smallest of all the plants I have *this is out of about 250 plants* Just some food for thought. I don’t know if it was something I did? Most of the plants are tomato. I like the idea and was wondering if anyone had better luck with other types of seeds.

    • Holly


      I love to hear of people doing, as best we can, scientific home studies like this. Hmmm … If all your seeds were from the same batch; you used the same number – and many of each – of each container type; all containers were not contaminated; and you cared for each identically, wow … that IS very interesting. If I had the same results I’d probably inquire about it, too, or just stick to what worked. Now you’ve got me curious! :)

      I’d love to hear what others have to say about this, too. (Send your gardening friends over here. ;) )

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